Productivity is a measure of your efficiency. It is the relationship between your output and your input of time and other resources.
Every serious individual engaged in some form of employment, production, enterprise, or activity desires to have higher output. You do not need your manager or poor business results to compel you to improve your productivity.
Every employee should do everything possible to increase his or her productivity. But how do you get this done? What are the critical things that come into focus to increase your personal productivity?
1. Time management is paramount in increasing productivity. You should value your time and use appropriate time management tools. Avoid distractions as much as you can. Identify your most productive hours where your energy levels are high and do the most important work during such times. Diminishing returns tend to set in at some point. Use your downtime productively by identifying good time-fillers. These are activities that are not part of routine but make use of extra time you have. You may for example use such time for reorganization and learning.
2. You need to distinguish between important and urgent things. Not every urgent thing is important. In fact, when you manage around important things, you tend to have less urgency. This is because you will have already taken care of the things that may surface as urgent.
3. Make use of the power of focus. You do not have to be engaged in an activity, rather choose to be engaged. A focused employee can be very productive through the power of choice. You can manage your time and output through self-management.
4. Inculcate the habit of discipline and control. You should eliminate bad habits that waste time. Such habits include unnecessary internet surfing, misuse or excessive use of social networks, misuse of phones, outright laziness etc. Delegate as much as you can. Learn how to manage information overload.
5. Planning in advance and being organized also help boost your productivity. If you are proactive in your approach you tend to be more efficient. The reactive and crisis approach to issues in the workplace breeds inefficiency.
6. Schedule your priorities by putting first things first. Your failure in this aspect can always earn for you rebukes. If you have ever worked with people who never get this right then you know what I’m meaning, don’t you?
7. What about your workstation? Does it enable you to be more productive? The physical organization and arrangement of your workstation affects your productivity. Additionally, the availability of vital resources such as equipment, reference material, appropriate technology etc can increase your productivity. Have you interfaced with people who always blame the tools? If you do not have the right tools, then start by addressing that problem.
8. If you are action oriented you can increase your productivity. You should avoid deferring issues. It is said that procrastination is opportunity’s assassin. Why not develop your personal execution culture and deploy it always while working?
9. People you work with can also determine your productivity. Build excellent relationships and learn how to deal with people. This boosts your morale and improves your productivity. A word of caution however – avoid toxic people and time wasters. Be assertive and you will eliminate the negative elements. If you fear people, you cannot improve your productivity. 10. You can also improve your productivity through balanced living. You should address aspects of health and attitude. Balanced living can awaken the high productivity giant within you. Take care of the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of life. You should learn to re-energize through approaches such as relaxation and stress management. These approaches also help avoid job burnout.